Head of the Bahamas Contractors Association (BCA) Leonard Sands has called for a review of the heads of agreement (HOA) between government and contractors of The Pointe Resort – China Construction America (CCA) – in order to cause for more Bahamian workers to be engaged in the construction of the project.
On Tuesday, Labour Minister Dion Foulkes said, that the HOA can be left up to interpretation, and stated that the 70:30 Bahamian to Chinese labour force can either mean during the entire construction or at the end.
The government, he said, has accepted the latter interpretation of the agreement, based on what was left in place by the former administration.
Sands said that while the association has to follow the terms of how the agreement is being viewed some, some “leg room” he said, should be granted.
“This matter underscores the fact that maybe there should have been more scrutiny of the heads of agreement because a development of this size we would have thought that more Bahamians would have been engaged every step of the way,” Sands said.
The BCA president argued that as the second tower is currently being constructed more Bahamian workers can be hired to complete the first.
While he said he was still not pleased with the standing ratio, Sands admitted that there are more Bahamians workers engaged on the site.
“The marina that will facilitate 100 vessels is being constructed with many more of our Bahamian labour force… the problem is we can’t see what is going on from Bay Street,” he said.
“The work actually has to be accessed by ferry so many are of the view that Bahamians are not on the site but, we have seen an increase after our investigation.”